Useful Textpattern terms


Textpattern is a content management system, or CMS, that can be used to create and manage many types of websites, including blogs. Using a CMS can make updating website content much easier, more collaborative, and accessible to people with no knowledge of html.


Textile is the web text generator included in Textpattern. It is basically a system whereby an author can use simple cues in her (article) text, which are then converted to properly-formed html code for use on the web. For example: _important_ is converted to the html <strong>important</strong>, which is displayed in a browser as important. An excellent resource for Textile is the Textile Reference Manual. You can also get quick help by clicking on "Textile Help" in the upper left of the Write tab.


Every piece of text on a site is an article, from each blog post to the "About Me" information. Articles that remain in place over time, such as "About Me" information, are called "sticky," or "static" articles. You manage articles in the Content > Articles tab. You create a new article in the Content > Write tab.


Each Article in Textpattern can be associated with up to two categories. Generally, a category is a fairly broad term. For example, on a site about graphic design, you might have a category called "Typography."

Categories must be pre-defined, before you write the article you want to put in that category. You can manage and create categories in the Content > Categories tab. You can create categories for Articles, Links, Images, and Files. To associate an article with a category, use the pulldown menus on the right side of the Write tab, in the section labeled "Sort and Display"


A tag, or keyword, is a more narrow term that can be associated with an article. For example, if an article is categorized under "Typography," possible keywords might be the names of fonts or font designers discussed, or terms like "kerning" or "leading."

Unlike categories, tags do not need to be pre-defined, you can create them on the fly. You can "tag" an article by entering keywords in the Keywords box on the lower left of the Write tab. Put them in a comma-separated list, like "verdana, matthew carter, leading".


A Textpattern Section is a division of content. The different sections on a site often dictate (or are dictated by) the main navigational links. Thus you might have an "About Me" section and a "Contact" section. The important thing for you to know is that when creating a blog/journal post, those generally go in the "Blog" or "Journal" section, depending on what you have opted to call it.

Normally this section is selected by default when you write a new article, and you can see that in the "Sort and Display" section beneath the two category pull-down menus.


There are two main places to display links on your blog. One is within a blog post. To accomplish this, you can use the Textile format "Another website(My link title)":

This will be converted to <a href="" title="My link title">Another website</a>, which will be displayed as a link like so: Another website (though the styling may be different).

The second place links may appear is in a link list, which could include links to other blogs you often read, or just sites you enjoy or find useful. The links in this list come from the links you enter in the Content > Links tab. The "Title" will become the linked text; the "Sort Value" can determine the order in which the links appear; the "URL" is the full url, including "http://", and the "Description" becomes the link title. You can also create link categories (in Content > Categories) and use the "Category" pull-down menu to associate a link with a category.

Note: Link titles should provide a reader with more information on the linked site. For example, if I am linking to a site called "," the title might be "My favorite place to sample and buy fonts."


Comments are reader responses to a blog or journal post. They hopefully allow you to get feedback and have a conversation with visitors to your website.

You may not want to have comments open for every single post, so you can turn comments off on a per-post basis in the "Comments" box on the lower right of the Write tab. You can also override the default comment invitation which appears at the end of your post.

You can manage and delete comments in the Content > Commments tab.

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